Online Program

Event specific examination of alcohol consumption and sexual behavior among college students in the United States

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 : 4:50 p.m. - 5:10 p.m.

Leah Bruch, B.S. in Community Health, MPH Student, George Mason University, Vienna, VA
Joshua G. Rosenberger, PhD, MPH, Department of Global and Community Health, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA
Purpose: While previous studies have documented sexual behavior and alcohol consumption among college students, limited data exists exploring the relationship between these behaviors at the event level. The purpose of this study was to examine the situational characteristics associated with U.S. college student's most recent drinking experience and the behaviors engaged in during a specific sexual event.

Methods: Data was collected via an internet-based survey from 18-30 year olds pursuing a bachelor's degree at a large East coast university. Utilizing a Community Based Participatory Research Approach measures were developed that assessed demographics, general health behaviors, attitudes toward sexual consent, and event-level data related to participants most recent sexual experience and most recent experience during which they consumed alcohol.

Results: Survey data provided contextual insights into risk behaviors of a college student population. Results from this study include: the relationship between engaging in sexual behavior and consuming alcohol during a, the extent to which students seek STI testing and factors influencing testing practices, cultural differences related to sexual activity and alcohol consumption, and attitudes and beliefs towards about sexual consent and the various verbal and non-verbal cues associated with providing consent to engage in sexual activity.

Conclusions: Participants reported a variety of factors that influenced their drinking and sexual behaviors. Findings highlight the importance of understanding the contextual components situational circumstances related to alcohol consumption. Further research is needed to aid in the development of appropriate programs to support the health of college students.

Learning Areas:

Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Advocacy for health and health education
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Program planning
Public health or related education

Learning Objectives:
Describe college students sexual behaviors and alcohol consumption during a specific event. Understand the differences in drinking behaviors among college students based on culture

Keyword(s): College Students, Sexual Behavior

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am an undergraduate student at George Mason University pursuing a degree in Community Health, with minors in Biology and Psychology. Although this is my first research project, I have studied sexual health at the college level for the past three years. I also have experience in the healthcare field, where I have seen the effects of many sexually transmitted infections.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.